tv Global 3000 KCSMMHZ March 3, 2012 5:00am-5:30am PST
♪ >> hello and welcome to global 3000, your weekly check on the issues that matter around the globe. we explore the side effects of a controversial method of shale gas extraction. picture perfect -- meet theptait creates news images for the computer game generation. and down and dirty -- we visit a hands-on farmer in south africa with a vision for the future. with fossil fuels running out, the petroleum industry is
forced to get more creative about tapping into the world's remaining oil and gas reserves. like the shale gas deposits scattered around the globe. the technology used to extract it is -- hydraulic fracturing or "fracking". depending on who you ask it's described as a real breakthrough or a recipe for environmental disaster. there are significant untapped reserves of shale gas in 32 countries. according to us estimates, china has the largest deposits and here exploratory drilling is well underway. in europe, poland is interested in the new technology, as it could allow the country to become more independent of russian gas supplies. meanwhile france has banned fracking because of environmental concerns. the south african government has likewise imposed a moratorium following public protests. latin america also boasts significant shale gas deposits which have already attracted
interest from the global petroleum industry. in the united states fracking is a well-established extraction technology which is helping washington reach its goal of independence from foreign gas imports. but here, too, more and more people are criticizing the method for its negative side- effects. >> this well extends down almost 2 kilometers, all the way to the marcellus gas field -- the largest of its kind in the us. in about a month, shell plans to start extracting natural gas here. northern pennsylvania's landscape has changed. the small gas platforms are everywhere. it's like a gold rush. shale gas is a billion dollar business. some believe it's the solution to many energy problems. kim windon works for shell. it's her job to convince the public that drilling for gas is the way to go.
>> it's very plentiful and we've learned over the years that it's something we can explore for and develop both safely and responsibly. >> but others in the area disagree. this platform is located near wellsboro, on a farm owned by carol johnson. >> as he is a little soft, but it is kind of weather in the spring anyway. >> today there's just a bit of tar left. but about a year ago, this field area was suddenly covered in some kind of fluid -- and carol's cows drank from it. >> the thing that happened was, we lost these calves. >> and how long did it take you to figure out what the reason was? >> about the second calf. >> in the end, she lost eight calves. to understand what happened, one has to understand how fracking works. in fracking, the drillers dig straight down, and the steel casing is surrounded by several
cement layers. after about 2 kilometers, the drill turns sideways and penetrates the rock, which holds a huge reservoir of natural gas. it. then a mix of water, sand and chemicals is injected at high pressure, cracking the shale rock and releasing the gas. the contaminated water also returns to the surface. normally, it's collected and disposed of. but on carol's farm, the fracking water leaked out and poisoned her cattle. even the cattle that didn't die were contaminated. and that put carol's farm at risk. >> it means that i couldn't sell my calves last fall as feeders so that people could get them ready to go to the market. i couldn't do that last year because i had to keep them. couldn't do anything with them. if i moved even one of them i would have been in trouble.
>> incidents like these raise another troubling question -- what does fracking do to drinking water? these images were filmed in colorado. according to the film-maker, fracking here allowed gas to escape from some wells and contaminate drinking water. what do fracking supporters say about such accusations? erick coolidge is a county commissioner, and owns a farm in wellsboro. he feels well informed by the fracking industry. >> and they're doing a real good job of that and they're promoting the benefits but they're also educating us to some of the unknowns like they claim the mixture or the chemical formation that goes down in the well when they frack it. >> we're on the way to erick's land. here's pretty obvious proof of erick's optimism -- a drilling platform.
erick is leasing this land for 17,500 dollars a year. from well cap to collection pool - everything's in place. signs of the gas boom are everywhere. new roads, tanker trucks, new stores opening in downtown wellsboro. unemployment is down as well in this otherwise relatively poor region. it's not easy to find opponents of fracking here. most everyone seems to think it's the way of the future. just over 300 kilometers west, in youngstown ohio, this sense of optimism has been literally shaken. in 2011, there were 11 small earthquakes here. before, there were none. jeff dick is a geologist. to him the reason is obvious. a disposal well where fracking brine is injected deep into the earth. >> that belief is based on the proximity of the earthquakes to
the injection, the timing of the earthquakes to the injections and recent seismic data that weave got that show that there is a left-lateral fault located about 3000 feet below the depth of injection for this particular well. >> fracking has brought jobs and tax revenues to the city. but the mayor had little choice. he called a halt to the fracking -- at least temporarily. >> you know, i wear two hats in affected, so myself i got scared when it happened so i know how everybody else felt. so again, i wanna be safe in my home just like everybody else wants to be safe in their home. these events have repercussions.
each story of contaminated drinking water and earthquakes discredits the industry. kim windon counters. >> i think there are a lot of people who are concerned about the whole aspect of drilling simply because there is a lot of misinformation out there. so part of our job as industry is making sure that people understand how we operate. >> carol is familiar with how shell operates. she signed her contract 30 years ago -- it can't be broken, and she doesn't earn much. >> $2 an acre is a pretty cheap piece of land for them to gain access to. cause it's a forever deal. once they get a well down, they have control of everything that's underneath. >> she didn't understand that when she signed the contract. but there's no way back for carol, or for the region. since 2008, nearly 3000 fracking wells have been drilled
in pennsylvania. >> for sure this is not the last time we will be talking about this controversial extraction method. and now we would like to find out what globalization means for you. and this week we talk to gracia goya in mexico. >> i'm gracia goya, i'm 40 and i live in mexico city. i work for a us foundation called "hispanics in philanthropy". we're working to promote the
development of latino communities. it means i can sit here in mexico city and work for someone in argentina or in guanajuato in mexico, and at the same time for a company in the usa. like so many people in mexico i'm worried about the violence we've been experiencing here over the last few years. i worry about how the authorities are going to stop this violence. my friends and my family make me happy. i love having them around me and
spending time with them. i love mexican food from all our regions. it is delicious. i especially like the food from the south-east, it's nice and spicy. i would like to travel to egypt, it has something magical about it. there's so much to learn, i'd love to go there. i go to the movies, i read and i like to go for walks.
>> images help us understand what is going on in any given situation. and that's what makes television so attractive. but when there are no pictures of a major news event, tv can reach its limits. a taiwanese media company is now fusing high tech computer graphics with the demands of our information age. the result is a television news bulletin with a computer-game look. and it is a huge success with viewers. >> this is taipei, the capital of taiwan. here, we're going to take a look into the future, the future of television. nothing will ever be the same. welcome to nextmedia, one of the most successful media companies in hong kong and taiwan.
>> i feel like i'm in space, especially when i walk. >> this motion capture actor sways and falls on the mattress. they're producing business news right now, the story is greece. the god of the underworld has passed judgment and greece must die and go to hell. the god of the underworld sends his guards to fetch greece but the country tries to flee. and this is what it will look like later on tv. go get him. business news for the video game generation. be it the greek debt crisis or currency disputes between the us and china -- nextmedia finds ways to tell complex news
stories which often lack decent footage. here's a new take on economic policy -- a rap battle between us president barack obama and chinese president hu jintao. ♪ >> well everybody's thinking about how to really tell a new story. there are many many ideas, but i think one man stands out in terms of giving us the best idea, and that is our founder mr. jimmy lai. he knows that the world and everybody is looking at images, videos and so animation in fact is a tool to let us deliver the missing piece when we don't have the video footage.
animation is a tool lets us deliver the missing piece when we do not have the video footage. >> in the news business speed is particularly important. every hour, journalists, graphic artists and actors meet to decide which story to cover and how it to present it. the actors' parts are then carefully scripted. cameras follow the balls attached to the actors' clothing sending their movements to a computer. while the actors work their way through the script, graphic artists develop the 3d models. finally, the movements and the models are fused. the entire process takes between one-and-a-half and three hours. but what does this have to do with the news? >> every story that we develop is based on the news story that is provided by the reporter on the scene, so there is basically no difference in terms of the facts that we have got. it's just a matter of how we deliver that fact in the story to our viewer.
so we don't see that there is any real problem. >> as time is short and every single scene takes a lot of computer capacity, the news item has to be stripped back to its essence. like in this report on the german pirate party. a fanfare for free internet downloads, free public transport and complete legalization of the consumption of and trade in marijuana. these animated news stories aren't just broadcast on tv but also run on the internet and can be accessed by barcode in the daily papers of the nextmedia group. cassian cheung says that it all is a huge success for the company. >> when we first introduced animation news, that's a bit more than a year ago, there were many skeptics thinking, 'well how can you combine animation with real footage'.
you know how many clicks we get today in hong kong, just a city of seven million people? we get 12 million clicks on our websites and our apps, combining our text and our video. number. >> people also want pictures of stories that happened off- camera. so nextmedia animated the shooting of osama bin laden. it was seen all over the world on television and the web and was a huge success for the company. but nextmedia have their sights set even higher and have invested in a technology that previously existed only in hollywood. it's called light stage. it's a dome fitted with six cameras and thousands of flashes. it can mimic faces, skin colors, and facial expressions more realistically than ever, generating virtual masks.
the equipment was developed by paul debevec, a professor at the university of southern california. >> so much more of what we're going to see in television and in video games and motion pictures is all going to be created digitally with virtual techniques. it's really similar to the case that right now, to write a letter, you don't take a piece of paper and a pencil to write a letter anymore. >> so this could very possibly mean that soon television as we know it will be a thing of the past. >> now to a subject that's much more down-to-earth. in fact, it doesn't get much more down to earth than this. we meet a south african grape farmer who's added another string to his bow by going into compost production. this byproduct of converting to organic farming is also helping capetown cut down on co2
emissions. here's how. >> a new sports field is being created here. soon students at this primary school will be able to play rugby on it. but first grass has to be grown on the field -- with the help of special climate-friendly compost. eddie redlinghuys is the man behind the compost. here he is explaining the finer points of healthy soil to his daughter. his family has been in farming for over a hundred years. >> i started composting because i changed my farming from conventional to organic.
and to change to organic i needed to find a good compost. so i looked through the cape town region and i couldnt find any good compost. >> but to make his own compost he had to find something to make it out of. in this case the answer lay in capetown. tourism is the biggest source of income for sunny capetown. since the soccer world cup, capetown has been polishing its image as a green city. green point park, the site of the city's world cup stadium, is a green oasis. it's been a few years now since the city disposed of the park's garden waste in dumps. instead it goes to the compost maker. it's a win-win situation, both financially and ecologically.
>> this enabled us to save landfill space which, as you know, is very expensive. and we also dont have space for landfills in south africa. we do have space but far away and this would create a lot of driving and obviously add to the carbon emissions and we are very sensitive to this and this is why weve started this program. >> the park makes for huge amounts of garden waste and clippings. workers in the city's green point park trim and snip here every day and their work generates some forty tons of garden waste each month. and they maintain the stadium grounds continuously even though it's only used sporadically at the moment. and this creates still more garden waste. processing this organic waste into compost is better for the climate than letting it slowly rot in dumps, which creates greenhouse gasses.
>> we are at a point now where the city is saving about a hundred thousands cubic metes+ of landfill space every month and that equates to in a year over 100 000 tons of carbon emissions that are being saved. >> trucks carrying the garden waste are on their way to the compost facility, a good half- hour's drive outside of capetown. climate-friendly composting is awarded carbon certificates for emissions trading, so the trucks first have to be weighed. to qualify for emissions trading, the composting company has to prove the exact tonnage involved. it takes about eight weeks and a fair bit of technology to turn green waste into compost. a machine sorts out pieces bigger than five centimeters. these big chunks aren't composted.
water is regularly added in order to maintain the right temperature and moisture balance. samples are regularly sent to the lab for quality control. our compost maker has been working for two years to perfect his formula. the university has helped him find just the right microorganisms to decompose the garden waste. >> through the different seasons we have different raw material coming from the gardens. because in winter you have dry leaves, dry wood and in summer lot more green and its different microorganisms groups which work on it. >> originally eddie made compost for his own use. but it's turned into a successful business and a job creator -- a boon for a country struggling with high levels of unemployment.
and there are plans to expand the company. >> we have been speaking to all the other major municipalities in south africa and trying to convince them to go the same way, and at least five or six of them are very close to make this step. >> some of the compost is sold at nurseries and garden centers. but the big buyers aren't hobby gardeners. full-time farmers buy most of it for their land. eddie redlinghuys says his compost improves the taste of fruit. >> the advantages of using reliance compost is, you get improved water holding capacity in your soils, you get the organic fraction coming up, the soil is becoming healthier because of all the microorganisms that start giving life back to the soil, which ends up you needing less
pesticides and fungicides on your plants, and all off that is beneficial to the environment. >> producing compost to make money while simultaneously supporting climate protection is quite an attractive idea in 2012. in any case back at the school, the kids will be happy when their new sports field is finished and covered in grass grown with the help of climate- friendly compost. >> interesting how so many things come down to football in the end. for more on the program, check out our website dw.de/global3000. but that's all for this edition. thanks for watching and don't forget to tune in again in seven days' time. until then, bye bye! captioned by the national captioning institute --www.ncicap.org--